icRKphJXQm-ezth8lntKydifkDg The Loose Screw: Schoolhouse Crew Review~College Common Sense

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Schoolhouse Crew Review~College Common Sense

Over the past month, I've been reviewing a product called Going to College and Paying for It by College Common Sense. This program was created by Denise Ames, who has been a Financial Aid Consultant for over ten years. It can be used with elementary through high school ages, because-guess what???- even kids as young as six can get scholarships!!! Wish I had known that about twelve years ago!

 Alyssa, eighteen years old, is a senior in high school.  She plans to go to the local community college for the first few years.  Because of that, we haven't done much in the way of applying for colleges and scholarships. I knew there was financial aid and that we'd apply for it. I knew there were scholarships but hadn't looked into them yet. I had no idea what a big mistake I have been making by not doing anything!  College Common Sense opened my eyes!

Going to College and Paying for It is available as a DVD and workbook for $50 plus $5 shipping and handling, or for $25 you can get one-year access to the same program online, with a downloadable workbook.  I was given the online access.  Here's whats included in the program:

There are six videos (about 15-20 minutes each) and corresponding workbook sections.  The topics are:
*The Big Picture
*How Financial Aid Works
*All About the Free Money
*The System that Works
*You in the Process
*Pull it all Together

There are also weekly lessons plans and a monthly newsletter available at the College Common Sense Website that are very helpful.

How did we use the program?  I watched the videos first and read the workbook section, making notes and highlighting things I wanted to point out to Alyssa. Then I would watch them with her.  I feel this was the best way to get through the material.  Alyssa is responsible for her binder (explained in the lessons), of course with some supervision from Mom.

What did we think of the program?  It was a huge help for both of us.  I must admit, some of the information can be overwhelming, but it is necessary.  Alyssa thought the videos were a bit dry and old-fashioned, but they got the necessary points across.  The most helpful lessons for us were How Financial Aid Works and All About the Free Money.  I'm discouraged that we didn't know about this program last year, or years before, but better late than never.  We are in HIGH gear now!  Going to College and Paying for It was a big eye-opener that we desperately needed!  Thanks Denise Ames and College Common Sense!

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